As the coronavirus epidemic in France is slowing down and the country is getting ready to phase out, the matter of immunity to the virus remains vital. Is it possible for a person who’s been cured to catch the virus another time? How long will one be immune? Is herd immunity possible?
A new test developed by a French laboratory could help on this issue and the deconfinement process. While other serological tests can tell us if one has already caught coronavirus or not with the presence of antibodies, Pasteur-TheraVectys vaccine laboratory is said to have developed a test that could assess immunity of someone who has had covid-19 but is now cured, and those who have been exposed to the virus.
According to Libération and an interview of Pasteur-Theravectys laboratory head Pierre Charneau, this test has been tested in the Jean-Monnet high school in Crépy-en-Valois, Oise as part of a study from the Institut Pasteur. Since then, it has been used since April 20, 2020 by the epidemiologic research and could be available to all soon.
The effectiveness of antibodies assessed by this serological test would be ranked in three categories: non-neutralizing, low and strong neutralizing. Pierre Charneau describes this test as having a very low rate of mistake. Its mass production could also be worth considering. The laboratory manager thinks one machine could assess 50,000 to 100,000 samples per week.